ERIC Number: ED203346
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1981-Mar
Reference Count: 0
Female and Male Modes of Rhetoric in an Advanced Composition Course.
Lamb, Catherine E.
A college composition course based on teaching the difference between male and female modes of rhetoric offers advantages over the traditional course in reference, persuasive, and expressive discourse: the appeal to student emotion provided by the terms "female" and "male," and the clarity of the terms in delineating the possibilities and limitations of either response in a rhetorical situation. The course defines the male rhetorical mode as writing as a product of thinking, to get a point across in a clear, direct, convincing way; the female rhetorical mode is writing as a record of thinking, used to strengthen bonds between writer and reader. Students demonstrate their competence in the male mode two-thirds of the way through the course by writing two extended arguments on contrasting sides of an issue and then evaluating both their arguments in writing. They next are exposed to C. Rogers' form of argument in which the writer views the reader as hostile and not as simply skeptical or mildly supportive. Finally, students use the female mode in a situation where they describe themselves or someone else, evoking a mood or reflecting in a more general way. Shortcomings of this method are that competent male mode writers sometimes find it difficult to make the transition to the female mode; students may mistake rambling, irrational writing as the female mode; and the method lacks the simplicity of more traditionally organized composition courses. (AEA)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Advanced Composition
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the Conference on College Composition and Communication (32nd, Dallas, TX, March 26-28, 1981).